Pushing the Limits of Copper

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Executive Summary

The ever growing demand for higher data rate is pushing existing electrical broadband communication systems, using coax or twisted pair cabling, to the limit. While optical access systems inherently have a much higher transmission capacity, upgrading the access network entirely to fiber remains a costly and time-consuming effort. Therefore, many operators deploy fiber gradually closer to the end user, while bridging the remaining distance through copper technologies such as VDSL2. In the next step of this evolutionary path, fiber is brought to distribution points that are in the range of no more than 200 m from the end user, with a copper access technology called delivering data rates of 500 Mb/s to 1 Gb/s over the remaining copper stretch.

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